Obama: Big winner in debate says new poll

Jake Turcotte

With 37 days to go before judgment day, two things are certain: Sarah Palin will make news no matter what she does, and at least one new poll will be released every day. Some days we'll get a combo meal -- a poll about Sarah Palin.

For example, a poll could be commissioned on the YouTube video posted Friday that shows Sarah Palin during the swimsuit competition in the 1984 Alaska beauty pageant. As of this posting, it has been viewed about 14,000 times. We're guessing that number will mushroom to well over a million -- or, for whatever legal reason, the video will be taken down before escalating that high.

Back to the polls

Regardless, the new poll today looks at Friday night's debate. The survey released from USA Today and Gallup show that of the 701 people polled 46 percent believe Barack Obama was the victor while 34 percent give the edge to John McCain.

On the economy and which candidate inspires more confidence to fix the mess, Obama is the winner -- although the numbers are paltry for both -- with 34 percent believing in the Democratic nominee and 23 percent thinking McCain can do a better job.

Who inspired more confidence on the foreign affairs front? This is McCain's home field advantage so one would expect the Republican nominee have a wide margin of victory. Not so. Despite his knowing who Tymoshenko and Yushchenko are, those polled rated McCain and Obama evenly at about 33 percent.

Sidenote: Who are Tymoshenko and Yushchenko, anyway? Viktor Yushchenko is the President of Ukraine while Yulia Tymoshenko is Ukraine's Prime Minister.

On the subject of which candidate is more likely to bring change to Washington - something that both candidates have been claiming they're better suited to do -- Obama was the clear winner with a 52 to 37 percent margin.

Pre-debate numbers

Obama's numbers were heading in the right direction anyway. Gallup's rolling three day poll - most of which was conducted before the debate - showed Obama enjoying a five-point margin, the highest in a week.

Today's numbers appear to mimic a CNN poll and a CBS survey commissioned among their viewers after the showdown. Some 51 percent of CNN's viewers thought Obama had a better outing, compared with 38 percent giving the edge to McCain.

While more of those polled in the CBS survey thought it was a draw, the margin favoring Obama was similar with a 39 to 24 percent showing.


And according to Democratic nominee Joe Biden -- the only vice-presidential nominee to speak after the contest -- McCain was wrong on everything. Really wrong on everything.

"Hey, look, who was right and who was wrong? John McCain was dead wrong on the war, John McCain’s been dead wrong in Afghanistan, John McCain’s been dead wrong in his judgment supporting Bush’s shredding national regulations to control Wall Street,” Biden told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer.

Next up, the Biden-Palin debate.

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